12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout | Stone Brewing

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12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout
977 Ratings
12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: American Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by ThreeWiseMen on 07-02-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 977 |  Reviews: 707
Photo of lifebeer
3.53/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a. poured dark brown/black with a finger of mocha head that hung around as a thin wispy film on the surface

s. the usual: licorice, chocolate, hoppy sweetness, coffee

t. roasted coffee beans and dark malts, bitterness more from hops than chocolate, finishes with a noticeable alcohol punch

m. medium for the style, not thick and velvety as is the case for many (the best) oatmeal stouts.

d. its not so thick, so its fairly drinkable, although the alcohol punch will take you out if you dont take it easy

overall, i'm somewhat disappointed here. no thick mouthfeel, no strong bitter chocolate flavor, just roasted coffee and alcohol. its possible that this wasnt stored in the best conditions (new beer distributors in NYC--a non-conditioned warehouse).

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Photo of Bighuge
3.35/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Inky black body. Thin coating of brown cream on top. Moderate amounts of lace are left behind. Aroma is chalk full of bittersweet chocolate, anise, rum soaked raisins and cherry. Flavor is some of the same, but also some fusel alcohol contributions that bring it down. A little too much heat for my liking. Didn't expect this much from a 9.2 beer. But other than that, there is the bitter chocolate notes and anise oil and coffee. Body is medium at best and carbonation fairly low, which doesn't detract from the experience. Not one that'd I'd need more of anytime soon.

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Photo of bluemoonswoon
4.32/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber, poured into am imperial pint glass. Thanks go to MtGoat for hooking me up with this one.

A: Pours a thick, oily black, topped with a one inch thick, solid, mocha colored head that fades into a quarter inch ring in about a minute. Less lacing and head retention that I could care to see, good viscosity though.

S: Sort of muted chocolate and coffee, but I will let it sit and breath for a bit before going any further with the review. Given some time to warm the smell does not change too much, the chocolate aspects become stronger and sweeter, perhaps balanced by the oatmeal used in this beer.

T/MF: I was expecting something far hoppier, more ravishing on the tongue, especially considering this beer is from Stone, but instead it is far smoother, silkier, and creamier than I ever could have anticipated. Oatmeal really smooths out most of the bittness in this bitter chocolate stout. Given extra sips the interplay between the chocolate and oatmeal really makes for a wonderful combination. The bitterness is detecable but not so much so that the oatmeal aspect of the beer is clouded over, there is a wonderful balance in taste demonstrated in this beer. Good strong mouthfeel, carbonation right on target for a stout, bitterness is only detectable in the finish and the beer just feels like silk on the tongue otherwise. Long, long, long, finish lets you rexperience the beer even after its gone.

D: Just a fun beer to drink, dangerously easy going down, alcohol is hidden very well, unless you really exhale hard on that reverse olfaction thing, this beer is about as smooth as it comes for a 9% plus ABV beer. Would love to drink this all year long and is an excellent companion for the Russian Imperial that Stone puts out as well.

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Photo of walshclimb
4.31/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours thick, almost oily dark brown/black with about 1" medium brown head after a relatively aggressive pour. Leaves good continuous lace around the glass. Intriguing chocolately malt aroma that is a little subtle but interesting nonetheless. The initial flavor is warm, rich roasted malt and chocolate with a pleasant bitterness but not overly so. Complex and evolving roasted malt and chocolate aftertaste that is long lived with a tip of the tongue bitterness that is nicely balanced. Very full bodied, creamy mouthfeel that coats your tongue and keeps the flavors around. Another successful anniversary beer from Stone. I am glad I managed to pick some up. It seems that I almost missed it.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.1/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a Nonic)

A- This beer pours a jet black body with a few tiny bubbles stuck to the edge of the glass. There is a sticky chocolate mile colored head that last and last.

S- The deep coffee roasted malt aroma has a slight cream smell to it with a faint coco powder hint when it is pretty warm.

T- The big roasted black malt flavor is inky with a faint tartness that becomes more earthy like oatmeal as the beer warms. There is a slight vinous note at the finish with a black roasted grain bitterness that is smooth but lingers. As the beer warms the tartness grows and the chocolate notes start to fill the finish.

M- The medium-full mouthfeel is almost slippery in texture with a fusel alcohol heat that is soon overpowered by flavor as the beer warms.

D- This is a big black stout with nice flavor but the chocolate is note very distinct until the beer warms a good amount.

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Photo of PittBeerGirl
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber poured into my snifter.

A- Deep brown-almost black nearly opaque body that pours with a 1 finger cafe brown colored head. Head fizzes away quickly and no lacing is left behind in the glass.

S-Roasted bitter chocolate malt and a hint oh phenols.

T- Roasted chocolate malt upfront with some oatmeal flavoring. A bit more bitterness comes through for the finish along with a hint of alcohol.

M- Low to medium carbonation and somewhat heavy body. Alcohol more present than oatmeal in mouthfeel.

D- This is a good imperial oatmeal stout. Not very complex but tasty. All the flavors are contained in the name. Not as thick of an oatmeal presence as I would like and certainly not as good as stone RIS but still a very good beer.

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Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.48/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from bomber to a pint glass the liquid is close to black with good carbonation. The head is dark ta, 2 fingers of fluffy foam and leave very nice lace.

The smell is good, chocolate and coffee notes.

The taste is very good, lots of dark roasted close to chared coffee beans and semi sweet chocolate. Really a great tasting brew.

The mouthfeel is good nice body and good carbonation.

The drinkability of this brew is great really a must try.

Prosit, MK

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Photo of RedChrome
3.8/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A jet black opaque brew. One quarter of an inch of dark brown foam sat atop for a few minutes. Too dark to see any carbonation rising. Lacing is stick patches.

A very bitter aroma on the nose up front. A definite blend of oatmeal and barley malt with a bit of chocolate showing through. A minor presence of alcohol.

Strong bitterness up front of the first sip. A very strong oat flavor that is overtaken at the end by alcohol. Just a bit hot still needs some time. Only a hint of chocolate taste.

A nice coating on the tongue. Carbonation hits just a bit before subsiding.

A nice brew. Would work well with a chocolate dessert. Still a bit hot as of review date. With another year this one will be a great choice.

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Photo of FishGetter
3.65/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Stone black apperance with a thin creamy head that quickly disapates however leaving small ring around glass.

Slight hint of oats and dark chocolate hide behind a roasted grain.

This one will put hair on your chest! Watch out ladies! Stong alcohol presents with dark chocolate tones and slight oat taste.

Excellent creamy mouthfeal. The oats work there magic here.

This one could use some time to mellow out a bit. Much warming going down the throat. Have another bottle, looking forward to re-visiting this offering.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured inky black with a foamy chocolate brown head, with no true lacing. Light won't penetrate this one.

Rich strong scents here. Sweet prunes, deep roasted malt, coffee, tons of licorice and black strap molasses.

Deep strong flavors wash over your tongue. Deep roasted malt and coffee notes, bitter edges of the dark chocolate, and boozy alcohol on your breath. Finishes very bitter -- not a hop bitter, or a bitter chocolate bitter, but kinda aspirin bitter. Not sure if I like this element.

Chewy, hardly any carbonation. Love the complexity anad structure of this beer, but if you don't lean toward these types of beers, you can probably finish the bomber and be done with this for a while. If big deep boozy stouts are your passion, jump in here. But know what you like -- this was a 22 oz @ $8.00/bottle.

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Photo of joe1510
3.29/5  rDev -20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22oz Bomber

I received this bomber in a recent trade with russpowell, thanks again Russ! Stone's 12th Anniversary glugs out of its bomber and fills my snifter with an inky black liquid. The head is dark brown, so dark in fact it seems to be laced in purple. The head leaves behind some sticky lace and never falls below one finger. The body lets zero light come through.

The alcohol is big upfront along with bittersweet baker's chocolate. The alcohol gets more and more solvent like as this beer warms and it gets to the point it's hard to pull anything else out. Darks berries and roastiness flash through but only make short appearances before the baker's chocolate and booze take over again.

The flavor is a little smoother then the nose but still somewhat harsh from all the noticeable booze. Although the chocolate is still bitter there seems to be a nice helping of deep dark chocolate thrown into the mix as well. Roastiness kind of shoots all over the place and never really straightens itself out. I can see this beer being better after some time but the alcohol is too big right now.

I was hoping to get more body out of this big oatmeal stout but was let down in the mouthfeel department. The body is on the heavier side of medium and works through quickly. I would have liked to see the silky smoothness that I expect from oatmeal stouts, especially of this size. The booze gets in the way here with fumes rising through the mouth and nose after each drink and before the somewhat drying finish.

The drinkability just isn't here. The alcohol is way too noticeable and the bitterness is too sharp for the style. This bomber will be more then enough for me.

I like all of Stone's lineup but this one falls short by a long ways. There's too much booze, too much baker's chocolate bitterness, too many big flavors that don't come close to meshing. This is a big overdone mess that aims for every direction. I have another bottle of this that I'll give a couple years which I think will help this beer immensely. I think over time the flavors will mellow and come together much better.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a dark brown color head with good retention and good lacing. Aroma is totally dominated by some bitter chocolate note (not at all surprising when you consider the label) with not much discernable hops. Taste is also dominated by bitter roasted malt with some distinctive chocolate notes. I was expecting more hops considering the brewer reputation but this one is really dominated by chocolate. Full body with a creamy texture and good carbonation and also nom discernable alcohol were noted. I think I preferred the Southern Tier Choklat a bit more then this one but this is still a winner.

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Photo of Lupe
4.07/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an evil looking thick black that no light passes through. Small mocha-brown creamy head quickly dissipates and leaves little lacing.

Heavy roasted malts aroma of dark chocolate, coffee, toffee, and a touch of oatmeal. Subtle and hard to place dark fruitiness, and a splash of alcohol.

Like the aroma, flavor is huge roasted maltiness. Dark roast coffee and dark chocolate start things off and add a hint of smoke. Mild sweetness slowly builds, possibly from the oats. Twinge of hops creeps in before the bitter and sweet flavors marry into something great. Then the alcohol shows up and puts a crimp in things. Gets a little boozy towards the end.

Full bodied - velvety smooth and creamy with enough roasted dryness to stop from getting cloying. Huge beer that is a sipper, as the alcohol gets a little in the way.

Close to something special in my opinion. I've found, for me at least, Imperial Oatmeal Stouts get a little too boozy. Not sure if it has to do with the oat-alcohol mix or coincidence.

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Photo of Jayli
3.58/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up at Gordon's in Waltham. I was VERY excited to try it! The beer poured a very deep brown/black, relatively no light passes through, with a large brown creamy, yet rocky head. The scent is of heavy roasted malts, chocolate, oatmeal and maybe even some espresso. The ABV is 9.20 and you can smell the alcohol clearly. I undestand it is imperial but most imperials that I have had lately still mask the taste of the alcohol a bit better. Taste was subtle at first but then the chocolate and oatmeal kicks in halfway down. The ABV was overpowering in my opinion...because of that, I found it to be not well balanced. I thought it masked a lot of great flavor. The mouthfeel was decent. Overall, I think less alcohol would have made this a great beer.

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Photo of bonbini26
4.08/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap @ the Tap Room

A- Poured into a goblet its a very deep dark near black color with a dark foamy head, and nice lacing

S&T-I think what suprised me the most about this beer was the enormous amount going on in the nose and taste and how only 1 thing really stood out big from the others and that was the bitterness. The chocolate came across as a semi sweet bitter chocolate, the malt same way and even the small notes of coffee and alcohol come across this way.

M-Heavy setting nice and bitter for this style I just don't see how it gets much better.

D-I would not want this all the time, I'm so glad its a limited release and was able to have it on tap, and i still have a bottle at home waiting for a cold winter night

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Photo of misterdmac
4.07/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz. bottle into my big 16.9oz snifter. No freshness date but, duh.

A. Pours black with a great 2-finger head. Somehow creamy and rocky at the same time. Fades but laces really nicely.

S. I loved the nose on this. Sweet toasty malts and heavy dark chocolate. There's another faint sweetness in there, like some dark fruit, will never be able to place it. Subtle alcohol waft lets you know she's a heavy hitter.

T. Dig, sweet, dark, roasted malts from the off followed by the bitter chocolatiness. I'm surprised actually by how smoky this tastes. Just a great balance of sweet and bitter roasted chronic. I'm going to include the mouthfeel here, which is a fabulous velvetly wave over the tongue, almost as if a superb quality chocolate has imparted a dryish creamy feel. Awesome.

D. This is certainly a big beer, but it's not syrupy like some RIS's and such. More drying in the finish than I expected. I might not be thinking about bomber #2 afterward, but I'm certainly still stoked to quaff some more of something!

Another one I really like from Stone. The 12th would probably lie down really well but it's in no way overpowering. If another one finds its way to my house it won't be around for too long.


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Photo of Buebie
4.6/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to JoeCeez for hooking me up with this!

Poured from a brown 22oz bottle. No freshness date, but its obvious as to the date.

Poured into an oversized merlot glass. 2 finger dark brown head. Quickly fading into a thin layer of retention. Spotty lace lines the glass. The head is easily rejuvinated with a swirl of the glass.

Malty in aroma with a good dose of bitter chocolate. Some faint oder of fruit, or cherries?
Toasted grain, and a faint cry of alcahol at the nose.

Carbonation zing upfront, then BLAMO! Chocolate.
Sweet through the middle and the swallow. Chewy thick cream like mouthfeel, thanks oats.
Finish is dry with a mild hop linger and great roasted malty grainy like flavors.
Some alcahol warming into the swallow.

This is damn good. Putting it back on my wants list, I want more of this delicious beer.

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Photo of erosier
3.8/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

L: Pours a deep jet black color with a small and thin brown colored head that sticks around for a bit.
S: Smells of alcohol, deep chocolate malts, and some roasted coffee aroma at the end.
T: Tastes alot like it smells. Deep chocolate malts, roasted malts, some coffee flavoring perhaps from the roastyness of it, then a big alcohol finish and then a nice really really bitter dark chocolate aftertaste.
M: Very thick, smooth, and very warming.
D: OK drinkability. Possibly too much alcohol in this one, but a very good beer nonetheless.

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Photo of PatronWizard
3.9/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bitter chocolate oatmeal stout. A mouthful before you even open the bottle.

Black fluid. Nice brown head.

Big whiffs of bitter chocolate.

The huge scent of bitter chocolate is one half the size of the huge taste of bitter chocolate. Like when you're a kid and you sneak some chocolate outta the kitchen, not realizing it's mom's cooking chocolate, or whatever the hell that stuff was, but it wasn't no hershey bar kinda chocolate.

Don't know what I just said, but this beer reminds me of it. Bitter chocolate with alcohol. Smoky flavors. Alcohol.

Thick. Thick. I actually open my stouts too cold and enjoy the transformation as they warm, usually finishing a bomber at room temp. Anxious to let this one warm as I can still get the carbonation at this point. Warms the old throat hole like a shot of whiskey.

Overall: might be too much for me

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Photo of seangroves
4.18/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass.

Very dark black in color. Poured with about 1/4" dark brown/burgundy head that dissipates quickly.

Mix of roasted and chocolate malt with a hint of sweetness.

Quite a mix/burst of varying flavors from beginning to end. Feels a bit tingly at first then a strong taste of the bittering hops and chocolate malt ended by a hint of roasted malt. Balance is toward the hops and the unsweetened chocolate.

Feels light/medium in body with semi-high carbonation but is incredibly smooth.

This beer is fairly easy to consume and the robust flavors that come out between the chocolate/hops/malts is quite stunning at first. I would drink another.

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Photo of ljbrisson
4.3/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thick, viscous, motor oil black into my Guinness pint glass, tinges of red around the edges when held up to light like a glass of cola. A thin brown head dissipates quickly. Aroma is blueberries, roasted malt, chocolate, with a hint of wood. Mouthfeel is slick, thick, and smooth, with subdued carbonation. Taste is chocolate, burnt wood, roasted malt, roasted coffee with a warming alcohol finish and slight bitter hop finish. Started drinking straight out of the fridge, but this vastly improves as it warms. Overall this is a great beer, one of my favorite so far. I may pick up another one on my next beer run.

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Photo of brdc
3.8/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Large capped bottle, poured into a pint.

Pitch black, dark brown head, little to no retention, some lacing.
Aroma includes a noticeable chocolate, some burnt (not roasted) malts, and it is all quite faint.
Medium bodied, a bit thinner than I would have liked, it has a quite plesant taste, if not overly complex. Bittersweet chocolate, roasted (not burnt) malts, coffee, and maybe some oatmeal, but I could be just looking too hard for the oatmeal.
A pleasant brew, quite good actually, but below the very high standards I look for in a Stone stout.

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Photo of Atron67
3.33/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 bomber picked up at steves awhile back when it first came out

A-Gives a good fluffy tan/chocolate colored head on top after a medium pour. sticky to the glass, and slow falling.

S- pretty bitter smelling, chocolate and roasted scents all over. other than the strong bitterness seems pretty standard for a stout.

T- thick malty characteristics, the chocolate is less intense then i was expecting, pretty tasty. theres a solid hop presence to it, which im not really pro or con on it, however this one gives me a wierd aftertaste and i feel like the hops are part of the mis-match. ohh well, still ok, just a little annoying

M- full body, smooth light carbonation

D- its alright, the aftertaste hurts it, but its still a decent beer, but a 1 and done for me.

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Photo of yossarian14
4.52/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served at Bukowski's in Cambrige in a 12oz tumbler.

A - Black with a nice foamy cafe con leche colored head that slowly faded.

S - Dark bitter chocolate, coffee, and alcohol

T - Tastes like it smells, heavy chocolate and alcohol, but not overwhelming. The alcohol hits you early but fades in the aftertaste.

M - Smooth and creamy. mmmm

D - Too heavy to drink very many too smooth to not have another sip. Think about boozy milkshakes.

Serve and savor on cool rainy Sundays

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Photo of JBuff41413
4.23/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

This is my first stout from Stone, I was curious and excited to see what it had to offer.

A- Oil slick black with a 1 inch mocha head that faded to leave a smooth glaze on the surface of the beer. This beer gives a very attractive pour, looks like pure black syrup cascading into the glass, you could write your name in the head as you poured if you really wanted to.

S- Out of the fridge you don't get the full effect, you HAVE to let this stout warm a bit. When it is at cellar temp you get dark chocolate, espresso, dried fruit, and alcohol.

T- As the name implies you get lots of bitter chocolate. You get the alcohol up front but it fades into a smooth bitter chocolate finish. You get small hints of dried figs and coffee all the way through, but the dark chocolate shines. This beer is beautifully bitter all the way through. With a few years in a cellar I think the alcohol would calm a little bit and the flavors would be be even more complex. I can't wait!!

M- Thick, Creamy, Smooth...what more could you ask for?

D- Pretty good drinkability. The alcohol can be a little harsh up front at times, but that doesn't affect the overall appeal. A pairing of a sharp creamy blue cheese, or goats cheese would be great.

Overall I really liked this beer. This would be a perfect beer after dinner on a cool fall night. i Will cellar a few bottles and might drink another fresh. Give this one a try.

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12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout from Stone Brewing
Beer rating: 4.11 out of 5 with 977 ratings